More homes needed in Stratford district

By Rob Cox Friday 06 December 2013 Updated: 06/12 15:54

THE DEMAND for new homes in the district is greater than previously thought, according to a new study.

Stratford District Council's draft core strategy had estimated 475 new homes would need to be built each year between 2008-2028.

But a new assessment covering Coventry and Warwickshire says 570 are required each year up to 2031 - a total of 11,400 new homes over a 20 year period.

It will come as difficult news for the council, with several large developments being fiercely resisted by local residents.

A council spokesperson said: "The advice governing the assessment of housing need has moved on even in the short period of time since the council agreed to plan for 9500 homes over the period 2008-28.

"New guidance on the preparation of a Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA) has been published by the Government and fresh population projections are available. The new SHMA for the Coventry and Warwickshire Sub Region takes into account the latest advice and projections.

"The council will need to consider this fresh evidence and to determine its response."

Plans for a ‘new town’ in South Warwickshire - that the council hope would take the brunt of the housing requirement - has faced stern opposition from residents.

Around 360 objections to the 4,800 home development between Gaydon and Lighthorne Heath were received during a six-week consultation, forcing councillors to reassess the scheme and consider alternative proposals for 1,200 homes at Stoneythorpe, or for 2,350 homes between Southam and Long Itchington.

And further concerns were raised when it emerged in October the district might need to take a share of Birmingham's housing requirement, where the city council is facing a shortage of development land and a shortfall of 33,000 homes.

Tory leader of the council, Chris Saint, always argued the core strategy – the final version of which will outline future development in the district and form the basis of the council’s planning policy up to 2028 – would not be published until it was right for the district.

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